frequently asked questions

how much do lessons cost?

Most students enroll in weekly, 30 minute lessons for $175 per month. please see PRICING (TUITION FEES) for more details.

is there a discount for siblings?

Yes. siblings, parents or any additional students get a monthly discount ($165 per month tuition for weekly, 30 minute lessons). Please see PRICING (TUITION FEES) for more details.

what if I have to miss a lesson or if there’s a holiday, can I just pay less that month?

Our monthly tuition is the same all year, regardless of the exact number of lessons received per month (although that number is usually 4). If we receive a minimum of 24 hours’ notice of your absence, you’re eligible to make up the missed lesson. Make-up lessons are never guaranteed, always subject to availability. Please see OUR POLICIES for more details on payments & make-ups.

what instrument should I (or my child/friend/acquaintance/etc.) start with?

In general, start with the instrument that you’ll be most likely to stay with for at least a year, or the one that you find yourself most drawn to. Maybe it’s the one you have at home already, or the one that you hear most clearly in your favorite music?

If you’re looking for lessons for a child under 10, or if you’re just looking for general music lessons for a beginner, piano is the top “go-to” recommendation. Since you do not need to hold up a piano in order to play it, the learning curve is much gentler than on stringed instruments (violin, guitar, ukulele), which need to be held up AND played with both hands. Once a child is older, stronger & has more focused attention, the fundamental musicianship learned on piano will transfer to any other instrument. For more details & age-specific recommendations, please see GETTING STARTED

how long will it take to learn an instrument?

It depends on how you define “learn an instrument.” If you mean “make a sound”, that generally happens on day 1. If you mean, “play a song” that depends on what song, and how well you want to play it. There are simple songs that can be played at the first lesson on most instruments. There are advanced songs that take professional musicians years to learn to play (and there is everything in between).

We do not work on “seasons” or “semesters” like sports, schools or other programs. Many Music Time students celebrate anniversaries of 5, 6, 7, 8+ years in lessons with us. There is always more to learn (or other instruments to try). We consider “success” in music to be simply the continuation of playing. There’s really no finish line.

i do not have an instrument yet. do you provide instruments?

For in-person lessons, we provide on-site keyboards, drum sets & amplifiers (for electric guitar/bass). Guitarists/bassists & all other string/wind players will need to bring their own instrument into the studio for lessons.

It’s best to have access to an instrument at home before scheduling a trial lesson. Your progress will be quite slow if the only time you spend on your instrument is 30 minutes per week at the lesson.

Rentals for band or orchestra instruments (trumpet, clarinet, flute, saxophone, trombone, violin, viola, cello, etc.) are available via our partner VIR. See INSTRUMENT RENTALS for more information on how to rent online. Since our studio space is small, we do not keep most rentals in stock. Please allow 7-10 days for delivery.

Many drum students begin lessons with only sticks & a practice pad for a while before committing to purchasing a kit. For more information about buying drums, please see: drum buyer’s guide

do you offer performance opportunities for students?

Yes, we organize an annual “big show” at the Bothwell Arts Center in Livermore. This one-of-a-kind extravaganza of music features over a dozen student & teacher ensembles performing across 2 stages. SEE BIG SHOW PHOTOS & VIEW BIG SHOW VIDEOS

Music Time also offers twice-yearly recitals (“Little Shows”) at our on-site performance space.

We are very proud of all the students & teachers that came together to create our Spring & Winter “digital” concerts from the pandemic years (2020-2021). VIEW ON YOUTUBE.

who will be my teacher?

We carefully & lovingly match students with our teachers by considering many factors. When requesting your trial, please give us as much information as possible about the person looking for lessons. It’s helpful to know not only the instrument you want to learn & your schedule/availability – although please, please do start with plenty of details about that.

For our match-making skills to reach optimum performance levels, we’ll need to also hear about the students’ personality type (more extroverted or introverted?), interests (favorite musical artists/songs), special needs, learning style & anything else that might be relevant. VIEW OUR TEAM

what method will my teacher be using?

Our teachers tend to cater lessons to the needs of each individual student rather than employing any one-size-fits-all teaching methods – that is the beauty of working with students in one-on-one, private lessons. Most teachers will decide on a method during the first few lessons. In general, this is a fantastic question to ask your teacher at the end of the trial lesson. Questions about lesson content are best brought to teachers directly. We’ll take care of you for any & all administrative questions.

do you offer testing or certification?

Music Time does not have any affiliation with standardized testing for music achievement. If you choose to pursue certification, our teachers are qualified & prepared to assist students in passing any exams that they choose to enroll in. Please let us know if you request a teacher who specializes in preparation for royal conservatory, certificate of merit, or any other exam.

can i pay for lessons with charter school funding?

Music Time is a vendor with Visions in Education and Valley View charter schools. If you’d like to use a PO for your lessons, please let us know before your trial lesson.

how do I get started?

So glad you asked. The best way to begin is to use the online form to request an introductory lesson (only $25). The more information that you can give, the better. Please let us know about the student’s personality and their musical preferences. I know it can be stressful to think about scheduling, but please do consider what day & time you can keep for a regular, weekly appointment. Not all teachers are available on all days, so knowing a day you can commit to is huge. thank you. we look forward to meeting you. ✌️❤️🎵

start with an introductory lesson for only $25